Nature And Telescopes Run#1

14 September 2020 / Words by Norm Barker. Photos by Norm Barker, Rod & Maryanne Nicholas

Saturday 12 September 2020

The day was sunny and 8 cars with 14 members gathered at the Caltex servo on the Monaro Highway at Hume. We set off in bright sunshine and made our way via Jerrabomberra and Queanbeyan to Googong Dam. The countryside was green and the Dam nearly full. The group stopped here for photos and a kind person with his little girl took a group photo. A few of the group had not been here before so it was new scenery for them.

Leaving the Dam lookout, we continued on via Burra and the Monaro Highway, back towards Canberra. The recent growth from the rain has turned the paddocks a brilliant green. At the first intersection we headed to Tharwa and out to the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve. There was not a lot of traffic and so we had a very relaxed drive.

The group selected a spot beside the information centre and set up our chairs and tables for a picnic. A few got coffees from the shop and after lunch had a short walk. Some ice-creams were also popular before getting back to the cars. As the entry to the park was free, we decided to do a circuit in the cars through the nature reserve. Normally we wouldn’t have bothered, as there is usually an entry fee. There were still signs of the summer bush fires in the south western corner and the efforts to stop the whole park going up were obvious.

Once we left the Nature Park, the convoy wound its way just down the road to the Tidbinbilla Tracking Station where photos of the cars among the dishes were popular. The cafe and the museum were closed so it was a short stop. Back to the cars, we completed the circuit back to Canberra via Cotter Reserve, past Stromlo Observatory (which is also closed at present) and finished up at the Canberra Arboretum where we were going to park at the top of Dairy Farmers Hill. However the Arboretum was very popular and there were no parking spaces.

We found a space further round to make our goodbyes and all head home.

All in all it was a great day out which everyone enjoyed.